Reactions to COP26 deal: 'Sorry,' 'closer than ever,' 'now we can start'
Updated 00:56, 16-Nov-2021

Governments and organisations have been reacting to last night's agreement at the COP26 summit in Glasgow.

Here's a summary of some of the comments


Boris Johnson, Prime Minister

"We asked nations to come together for our planet at COP26, and they have answered that call. I hope that we will look back on COP26 in Glasgow as the beginning of the end of climate change, and I will continue to work tirelessly towards that goal."

Alok Sharma, Business Secretary and president of COP 26

"May I just say to all delegates I apologise for the way this process has unfolded and I am deeply sorry. I also understand the deep disappointment but I think as you have noted, it's also vital that we protect this package."


Zhao Yingmin

Vice minister of environment

“I think our biggest success is to finalize the rulebook. Now we can start implementing it and delivering it on our achieved consensus.”

Independent activist

Greta Thunberg

"The COP26 is over. Here's a brief summary: Blah, blah, blah. But the real work continues outside these halls. And we will never give up, ever."


John Kerry, climate envoy

"We are in fact closer than we have ever been before to avoiding climate chaos and securing cleaner air, safer water and a healthier planet."

Marshall Islands

Tina Stege, Climate Envoy

"There was a conversation that we were not a part of and it was a real blow. We were told that there would be no further changes to the text, and we had already swallowed some changes that were very difficult to swallow and that came at the end. I think for us, particularly from the very small island states, we come here to speak, to be heard and for that to happen, we need to be in the room."


Antonio Guterres, Secretary General

"The approved texts are a compromise. They reflect the interests, the conditions, the contradictions and the state of political will in the world today. They take important steps, but unfortunately the collective political will was not enough to overcome some deep contradictions."

Chatham House

Tim Benton, Director, environment and society

"Not enough has been done at this meeting to reduce emissions consistent with avoiding dangerous climate change in decades to come. There have been lots of pledges and the launching of encouraging new international initiatives, some more meaningful than others. But genuine urgency and a willingness to match words with action and to close the yawning gap between pledges and detailed, short-term plans is still missing."


Camila Isabel Zepeda Lizama, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

"We believe we have been sidelined in a non-transparent and non-inclusive process. We all have remaining concerns but were told we could not reopen the text. (...) Mexico for example believes the language on human rights should have been strengthened and are very, very disappointed that such demands were not heard, while others can still ask to water down their promises."


Svenja Schulze, Environment Minister

"Glasgow is bringing a clear acceleration for climate change, and more speed is necessary. (...) The fossil fuel era is coming to an end, the energy transition is becoming the model worldwide."


Jennifer Morgan, International Executive Director

"They changed a word but they can't change the signal coming out of this COP, that the era of coal is ending. If you're a coal company executive this COP saw a bad outcome."

Costa Rica

Andrea Meza, Environment Minister

"Of course, we wanted to see more in loss and damage. Of course, we wanted to see more in the adaptation finance package, but I think that it was a shift in certain ways. I think that for the first time, at least in some rooms, we have space to really have more frank conversations."


Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, Global Lead on Climate

"We must acknowledge that progress was made. There are now new opportunities for countries to deliver on what they know must be done to avoid a climate catastrophe. But unless they sharply pivot to implementation and show substantial results, they will continue to have their credibility challenged."


Simonetta Sommaruga, Environment Minister

"The COP26 is history - but we did not write history in Glasgow. In view of the expectations, one cannot really be satisfied with the result. But we have achieved something in individual points."

Alok Sharma apologised for the way the deal was concluded /Paul Ellis/AFP

Alok Sharma apologised for the way the deal was concluded /Paul Ellis/AFP

Source(s): Reuters

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